How God Responds To An Honest Seeker

Honest Seeker Jesus
Read John 3:1-16 Nicodemus Visits Jesus

An Honest Seeker Comes To Jesus

There was this man who was a Pharisee named Nicodemus. He was a teacher of the Jewish scriptures, and also a member of the Sanhedrin, one of the 71 Jewish men who ruled over Israel. I’ve heard the Sanhedrin described as a combination of our Supreme Court and our Senate, so the guy was a big deal in the Israeli community.

He shows up to Continue reading

What Every Parent Wants (Including God)

Christian discipline

“I’m not sure I like bathtime.” (by Tom Page, Creative Commons)

Read John 2:13-24, Jesus Cleanses the Temple

Sin Inside The Temple

So the people selling animals in the temple, and the people changing out currency were taking advantage of the situation. If you traveled to Jerusalem for Passover, and you showed up with a sacrificial animal, it had to be without blemish. The priests were the ones who decided if it was acceptable or not. Well guess what, it was usually found to be unacceptable. But, conveniently located right here in the temple we happen to be selling pre-approved animals for sacrifice–for an exorbitant price. And, you have to pay for the animal with the temple currency. We can exchange your cash for our currency, in fact we have money changers right here in the temple standing by, but, it will cost you.

Providing a means of exchanging currency and providing animals for the Passover sacrifice was a good thing, but overcharging wasn’t. It was a sin. It was a sin found right there inside God’s temple. And Jesus, out of love for his Father’s house, turned the tables on those taking advantage of the people. He took action.

The religious leadership of his day asked Jesus: What sign can you show us to demonstrate you have the authority to cleanse the temple like this?

Jesus said: Continue reading

Things I Heard In Church: At one point the bat was inches away from my neck and making me a vampire.

things I heard in church bat

At one point the bat was inches away from my neck and making me a vampire.

Paraphrased from a Dave Teixeira teaching, 10/25/2015, Sunday, Strength in Weakness

Image via cthoyes – Creative Commons (The bat in this image is not the same bat that nearly transformed Dave Teixeira into a vampire.)

How To Find The Best Wine Ever

Christian joy happinessNo Wine At The Wedding

So there’s this wedding. And it’s time for the reception. And Mary, Jesus’ mother, is there. And Jesus is there with his brand new disciples. And the wedding planner miscalculated, so they ran out of wine.

I don’t know if you’ve ever been at a wedding where you were privy to what was happening behind the scenes but if you have, you know that when the supply of drinks, or food, or any other essential item runs out, the women involved start to–well, their emotional intensity rises significantly. Kathy was involved in serving a meal at our son’s wedding and she was so nervous she Continue reading

Things I Heard In Church: Love Will Make You Weaker

“Love is always attached to vulnerability. Love will always make you weaker and more powerless, than you were before you loved. Some of you understand this. Some of you know this to be true because this is your story. You have a child who went off the rails, or a spouse who one day decided they were tired of being married, or a mom or a dad who treated you badly. And the pain you feel from those moments, the brokenness in your heart, is the direct result of the love you have for those people. You see, if you didn’t love them, it wouldn’t hurt.”

Yet we’re commanded to love. In fact: “Love is the crowning characteristic of the Christian.”

“You want to know what it means to be a mature follower of Jesus? It means to love people so much that they can hurt you. It means making yourself vulnerable to pain and suffering because of your love for them.” –Dave Teixeira

Dave Teixeira, 10/25/2015, Sunday, Strength in Weakness

Mark Watney’s Connection From Mars (And what that has to do with our connection to Heaven)

Jesus is the way to heaven

And he said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.” John 1:51

The Martian And Mark Watney’s Connection

I just finished reading the book The Martian by Andy Weir. And if you’ve already read the book or seen the movie you know that Mark Watney, a mechanical engineer and botanist, is left stranded alone on mars–for a very very long time.

He’s alone but he’s alone in a way no one has been alone before. He’s the only living creature on the entire red sand desert, unbreathable atmosphered, super frigid temperatured planet. Mark Watney spends every day on that planet just trying to figure out how to survive. But there’s one place in the book where he talks about this great connection he has that makes all the difference. His connection is with a team of scientists in Houston. Watney says, Continue reading

Things I Heard In Church: “Some Kind Of Wild Cougar Type Creature…”

While listening to the story of Joseph and his brothers:

“They have his technicolor dream coat, and they’ve got it ripped up, and there’s animal blood on it, and they’re like, ‘I don’t know what happened. Some kind of wild cougar type creature must have gotten your son.'”

Then later…

When Joseph is Potiphar’s servant, working as the master of his house, Potiphar’s wife takes notice of Joseph. And Joseph’s good looks lead to “a very intense moment where he’s attacked by another wild cougar type creature, who comes along and says, ‘Will you sleep with me?'” (Matt Bowen)

References and Resources:
Genesis Chapter 39

Matt Bowen, 10/18/15, Sunday, Breaking the Power of the Past

It Is Finished: 7 Stops In The Quest For Rest by Peter-John Courson (A Book Review)

Peter-John Courson book It Is Finished(Peter’s book is available on Amazon. Just click on the link: It Is Finished by Peter-John Courson)

Why Peter-John Courson Wrote This Book

The first sentence of the book reads: “When I was twenty years old I lost my life.” Peter goes on to describe how Continue reading

Things I Heard In Church: This amazing quote about Joseph’s brothers’ brutal cruelty

Things I Heard In Church:

This amazing quote about the way Joseph responded to the brutal cruelty shown to him by his brothers. Continue reading